Update 3/9/21 — Charging documents obtained by WDVM provide details about what allegedly transpired before authorities arrived at the scene.
Reginald Dunlap Jr. is charged with first-degree murder in the death of his wife Lauren Charles. Police found Charles dead in their Kensington home on Sunday, March 7.
According to court documents, Dunlap Jr. called 911 to report he had found his wife dead in their College View Drive home after returning from church around 1:30 p.m. on Sunday.
Montgomery County Police officers who responded to the call say they were met with the “strong smell of a bleach-based cleaning agent” upon entering the residence. They also reported seeing blood on Dunlap Jr.’s hands.
Officers found Charles dead in the master bedroom of the house. Court documents say the bedroom was “completely ransacked,” with dresser drawers pulled out of place and a blood-stained mattress tipped over on the floor.
Police also found blood spatter in several spots in the bedroom, along with an empty bottle of bleach. Police report signs that the bleach may have been poured onto Charles.
Empty paper towel packaging and a still-wet scrubbing brush were also located on the premises.
In an interview Sunday afternoon, police say Dunlap, Jr. told them he and Charles were “possibly separating,” even though he did not want to. He also said they no longer slept in the same bed, and he had last seen her early that morning around 1 a.m. Sunday before going to sleep in another bedroom.
In that interview, he also told police he woke up later that morning, “made himself breakfast, walked the dogs, and went to church.” He told them he was at church from around 11:45 a.m. to about 1 p.m.
He said after he got home from church, he went into the other bedroom to change, stopped by the kitchen, and went to check on Charles, according to court documents.
Dunlap Jr. says he found her dead on the floor of the master bedroom, and went outside on the porch to call 911.
Court documents say police found no signs of forced entry into their home.
“Based on the violent nature of the crime scene,” investigators do not believe it would have been possible for Dunlap, Jr. to have slept through someone coming into the home and the “struggle that obviously occurred,” even though he was in another room.
The documents go on further, saying the investigation leads police to believe that person responsible for the crime “took significant time to attempt to clean the scene and destroy evidence on Charles’ body.”
KENSINGTON, Md. (WDVM) — The Montgomery Police Department has arrested and charged Reginald Dunlap Jr. for the first-degree murder of his wife, Lauren Elizabeth Charles.
According to officials, Dunlap Jr. called 9-1-1 around 1:40 p.m. on Sunday, March 7 and stated that he found his wife deceased in their home. Officers found Charles deceased in the home and suffering from trauma to her body.
An investigation is ongoing and no further information is available at this time.